The Commonwealth Scholarship and Fellowship Plan (CSFP) is one of the best-established and most successful forms of Commonwealth collaboration. It was established at the first Commonwealth education conference in 1959 since when Commonwealth governments have provided some 26,000 awards under the scheme. Most have been for postgraduate study, but there have also been opportunities for mid-career awards and some undergraduate scholarships. Its 50th Anniversary Appeal, launched at the Conference of Commonwealth Education Ministers in Kuala Lumpur, June 2009 has established a distinctive fund that will be used to support Commonwealth Scholarships in low and middle income countries. It will provide help to such countries to demonstrate the strengths of their universities to the wider world.
BNET Project Overview
In support of the 50th Anniversary Appeal the Trust has agreed to fund a five-year visiting fellowship at the University of Ibadan. The purpose of the Fellowship is to assist in the University’s planned programme of development as an international centre for postgraduate training and research. The BNET Fellowship will provide £10,000 annually to fund the appointment of a senior visiting academic to work with university colleagues for a period of up to three months in all aspects of teaching, supervision, mentoring and joint research.
This Fellowship is part of BNET’s strategy to make a permanent and noticeable impact on education in Nigeria.
- In 2011, following a stringent selection process, Dr Simon Heap was appointed the first visiting academic in August. Simon, a BNET member, was a full-time student at Ibadan University between 1990 and 1996 where, funded by a Leverhulme Trust Study Abroad Studentship, he was awarded his doctorate. The Fellowship Award is for a period of three months and Dr Heap successfully undertook his assignment between September and November 2011.
At the Trust's Sussex Regional Meeting held on Saturday 21 May 2012 Dr Simon Heap, now Senior Programme Officer at Japan International Co-operation Agency, gave an illuminating talk about his visiting fellowship to Ibadan University titled UI, Ibadan and Nigeria: Reflections of a Visiting BNET Fellow. A full transcript of that lecture may be viewed here.
- In 2014 Professor Herick Otieno, a Kenyan national and Professor of Physics at the Maseno Universtiy in Kisumu, Kenya was selected to be the second visiting academic for Ibadan University. His successful three-month placement began at the end of June 2014 during which time he was engaged in teaching undergraduate and postgraduate courses in Solid State Physics as well as undertaking research in the field of Renewable Energy Development and Application.